The tragedy in the Gulf of Mexico showed how a person with his own hands can destroy nature with the help of nature within a few weeks. We suggest recalling the 10 largest spills of black gold on water in the history of mankind.
The largest oil spills in human history
The tragedy in the Gulf of Mexico showed how a person with his own hands can destroy nature with the help of nature within a few weeks. While BP is urgently looking for money to restore the Gulf of Mexico, and US authorities decide what to do with offshore drilling, we suggest recalling the 10 largest spills of black gold on water in human history.
1.In 1978, the Amoco Cadiz tanker ran aground off the coast of Brittany (France). Due to the stormy weather, the rescue operation was impossible. At that time, this accident was the largest environmental disaster in the history of Europe. It is estimated that 20 thousand birds died. Over 7 thousand people took part in rescue operations. 223 thousand tons of oil spilled into the water, forming a slick the size of two thousand square kilometers. Oil also spread over 360 kilometers of the French coast. According to some scientists, the ecological balance in this region has not been restored so far.
2. In 1979, the largest accident in history occurred on the Mexican oil platform Ixtoc I. As a result, up to 460 thousand tons of crude oil spilled into the Gulf of Mexico. The liquidation of the consequences of the accident took almost a year. It is curious that for the first time in history, special flights were organized to evacuate sea turtles from the disaster area. The leak was stopped only after nine months, during which time 460 thousand tons of oil fell into the Gulf of Mexico. The total amount of damage is estimated at $ 1.5 billion.
3. Also in 1979, the largest oil spill in history occurred due to a collision of tankers. Then in the Caribbean two tankers collided: Atlantic Empress and Aegean Captain. As a result of the accident, almost 290 thousand tons of oil fell into the sea. One of the tankers sank. By a happy coincidence, the disaster occurred on the high seas, and not a single coast (the nearest was Trinidad Island) was harmed.
4. In March 1989, the Exxon Valdez oil tanker of the US Exxon company ran aground in Prince Williams Bay off the coast of Alaska. More than 48 thousand tons of oil spilled into the ocean through a hole in the vessel. As a result, more than 2.5 thousand square kilometers of the sea were affected, and 28 species of animals were endangered. The accident area was inaccessible (it can only be reached by sea or by helicopter), which made impossible the quick reaction of services and rescuers. As a result of the disaster, about 10.8 million gallons of oil (about 260 thousand barrels or 40.9 million liters) spilled into the sea, forming an oil slick of 28 thousand square kilometers. In total, the tanker transported 54.1 million gallons of oil. About two thousand kilometers of coastline were polluted with oil.
5. In 1990, Iraq captured Kuwait. The forces of the anti-Iraq coalition formed by 32 states defeated the Iraqi army and liberated Kuwait. However, in preparation for defense, the Iraqis opened the gate valves at the oil terminals and emptied several oil-loaded tankers. This step was taken in order to impede the landing. Up to 1.5 million tons of oil (different sources give different data) spilled into the Persian Gulf. Since the fighting was ongoing, for some time no one was fighting the consequences of the disaster. Oil covered about 1 thousand square meters. km the surface of the bay and polluted about 600 km. coasts. In order to prevent further oil spills, US aviation bombed several Kuwaiti oil pipelines.
6 In January 2000A major oil spill occurred in Brazil. Over 1.3 million liters of oil fell into the waters of Guanabar Bay, on the banks of which Rio de Janeiro is located, from the Petrobraz pipeline, which led to the largest environmental disaster in the history of the metropolis. According to biologists, nature will need almost a quarter century to completely restore environmental damage. Brazilian biologists have compared the scale of environmental disaster with the effects of the Gulf War. Fortunately, oil was stopped. It passed with the flow of four urgent barriers and was “stuck” only on the fifth. Some of the raw materials have already been removed from the surface of the river, some of them have spread over the emergency diversion channels dug in an emergency. The remaining 80 thousand gallons out of a million (4 million liters) in the water
7. In November 2002off the coast of Spain, the Prestige tanker broke and sank. 64 thousand tons of fuel oil fell into the sea. € 2.5 million was spent on the aftermath of the accident. After this incident, the EU closed access to its waters for single-hull tankers. The age of the sunken ship is 26 years. It was built in Japan and belongs to a company registered in Liberia, which, in turn, is managed by a Greek company registered in the Bahamas and received a certificate from an American organization. The ship was chartered by a Russian company operating in Switzerland that transports oil from Latvia to Singapore. The Spanish government has filed a lawsuit for $ 5 billion to the American Maritime Bureau for the role that its carelessness played in the disaster of the Prestige tanker off the coast of Galicia last November.
8. In August 2006tanker in the Philippines crashed. Then 300 km of the coast in two provinces of the country, 500 hectares of mangrove forests and 60 ha of algae plantations were polluted. The Taklong marine reserve was also affected, on the territory of which 29 species of coral and 144 species of fish lived. As a result of the oil spill, about 3 thousand Filipino families were affected. The tanker Solar 1 of the Sunshine Maritne Development Corporation was hired to transport 1800 tons of fuel oil from the Philippine state company Petron. Local fishermen, who used to be able to catch up to 40-50 kg of fish in a day, are now struggling to catch up to 10 kg. To do this, they have to go far from the places where pollutants spread. But even this fish is impossible to sell. The province that has just stepped out of the list of the 20 poorest regions of the Philippines seems to
9. On November 11, 2007 , a storm in the Kerch Strait caused an unprecedented emergency in the Sea of Azov and the Black Sea – four ships sank in one day, another six ran aground, and two tankers were damaged. More than 2 thousand tons of fuel oil spilled into the sea from the broken Volgoneft-139 tanker, and about 7 thousand tons of sulfur were on the sunken dry cargo vessels. Rosprirodnadzor estimated the environmental damage caused by the wreck of several ships in the Kerch Strait at 6.5 billion rubles. The damage only from the death of birds and fish in the Kerch Strait was estimated at about 4 billion rubles.
10. April 20, 2010at 22:00 local time, an explosion occurred on the Deepwater Horizon platform, causing a severe fire. As a result of the explosion, seven people were injured, four of them are in critical condition, 11 people were missing. In total, at the time of the emergency, 126 people worked on the drilling platform, which is larger than two football fields, and stored about 2.6 million liters of diesel fuel. The productivity of the platform was 8 thousand barrels per day. According to estimates, in the Gulf of Mexico, up to 5 thousand barrels (about 700 tons) of oil are poured into the water per day. However, experts do not exclude that in the near future this figure may reach 50 thousand barrels per day due to the appearance of additional leaking spots in the well pipe. In early May 2010, US President Barack Obama called what was happening in the Gulf of Mexico “a potentially unprecedented environmental disaster.” Oil stains were discovered in the thickness of the waters of the Gulf of Mexico (one spot 16 km long, 90 meters thick at a depth of 1300 meters). Oil may flow out of the well before August.